A High Price To Pay

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 15 May 2018

Member Reviews

ABOUT THIS BOOK: When Rensey joins the Confederate Army with a group of teenagers from his home town, he s absolutely certain he's doing the right thing. After all, he's heroically protecting his state from Northern invaders. But Rensey and his friends quickly discover that war is not the glorious adventure of their boyhood dreams. Rather, it becomes a nightmare of terror as he is forced to kill or be killed. Through countless battles and determined bravery, Rensey becomes a hero in the eyes of his fellow soldiers. Deep inside, Rensey can't help but ask ... am I doing the right thing? But as the months of war turn to years, the battle-hardened boys begin to wonder if they'll even survive. Rensey yearns for the day when he can be back home for good and start a family of his own. At one point, this young man, a heroic soldier only a few months earlier, considers desertion from the army. He is constantly trying to see God's hand in the war, but while his world is crashing around him, he struggles with his faith.

MY THOUGHTS: 'Rensey and his friends quickly discover that war is not the glorious adventure of their boyhood dreams'. That sentence is the epicenter of this book. 

Throughout history man has fought man for all manner of reasons which usually boil down to just one - greed. Battles have been glorified, heroes named. But war is a dirty and demoralizing business to those in the thick of it. And Rick Gangraw tells it how it was. He makes no attempt to glamorise it. Instead he is in the heads of the young boys as they go off on an apparent adventure, prepared to defend their beliefs, their homes and their futures. We are with these boys as their ideals are shattered and the reality of war sinks in. 

But far from being a depressing read, it is a story of awareness, tempered with desperation and, ultimately, hope. 

This is one of the most realistic books based on the Civil War that I have ever read. 

Thank you to White Feather Press via Netgalley for providing a digital copy of A High Price to Pay by Rick Gangraw for review. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions.
Was this review helpful?
Great read!  Rensey's struggles as he navigates such huge internal and external conflict is heartbreaking to go through with him.  He longs for an end to the slaughter, but will he ever be the same person he was or thought he would be before the war?  I also appreciated that a different perspective on the Civil War was discussed.  Not every Confederate soldier fought to defend slavery..  While slavery was the catalyst for the outbreak of a war, the conflict had much bigger implications to so many people.  

**I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review**
Was this review helpful?
Poor flow to the story, I found the plot to be predictable and the characters poorly defined.
Was this review helpful?
Rensey Goode was a young boy growing up in the beautiful setting of the North Carolina mountains.  His family owned a farm and he knew that he was destined to work with them in his future.  The prospect was pleasant and awaited until a cataclysmic event occurred.  Suddenly his entire outlook changed.  The year was 1861 and several southern states including North Carolina made the momentous decision to secede from the union.  Their reason was to defend themselves against a northern government that was looking to make slavery illegal and in effect take way an agricultural system that provided a comfortable living for gentlemen farmers.
     With war on the horizon Rensey and several of his friends heeded the call to join the Confederate army in order to protect their way of life. Mr Gangraw does a good job of depicting the boys moving from their initial enthusiasm into the horror of combat.  Suddenly they are thrust into the experiencing kill or be killed, maiming, and watching their friends die.  They also become aware that the enemy is not evil but consists of men and boys like themselves forced into an armed defense of their country against the division facing it.
     There are many books written by anti war activists that call attention to the horrors of the institution.  Mr Gangraw joins their ranks with a good story of what combat really is like.  His contention, like those of the others writing about these horrors is that the only winners of any war are those that survive it.  Glory is an empty phrase for those that have died supposedly earning it.
Was this review helpful?